Knowing how to stay competitive in a market that is completely focused on eCommerce in the United States in 2020 is hard. With the COVID-19 Pandemic, every company is fighting to stay ahead of everyone else and is using all its capabilities to do so. It can be very hard to stay ahead of everyone and stay successful without closing down. I think that there are lots of things you can do to stay ahead of the competition. Some of them won’t cost you money to get either. IT can be as simple as taking some of your time to overcome the hardships and costs that your current practices may be costing you. So if you run an eCommerce company and are constantly purchasing shipping supplies this may be the read for you.
I think that knowing everything that is going on in your business is important to be successful. I don’t mean being a micromanager or an overseer of everything. But knowing what systems are in place and what is being done in each area is important. The systems you have in place can be the difference between being successful and closing down. But putting those systems in place is really complicated. So I want to talk about one system our company decided to improve and show where that went in the long scheme of things and how it ended up saving us money.
The shipping department in my company turned into the most important part of our business when COVID-19 hit. We were no longer able to use our storefront and get walk-in customers. This meant that all of our products that were sold came from online. Our shipping department was now responsible for getting our products safely to our customers without getting damaged. I have to admit that this was something that we did maybe once a week but most of our orders came from inside the store. This all changed and we had to find ways to make our costs go down.
We looked at all aspects of shipping and found that corrugated boxes were going to be the way we were able to ship out items out. We started to count every box and every single bit of tape that we used to seal them up. We researched labels and every aspect of the costs involved in getting our products out the door. So we watched multiple shifts accomplish the same job and without a doubt, we saw a lot of tape being used. This was because these groups had seen our boxes open up without 3 strips on the top and bottom before. This was 6 strips of tape per box and that seemed like a lot.
It turns out that we wanted to check and make sure we were doing the right thing. We didn’t really know where to turn, but someone suggests we call a shipping supplies store and ask about what we were doing and to see if they had suggestions of ways to cut down on cost. What I found out was that we were using a tape that was not rated for the weight of the boxes. They gave us a tape that could do it in a single strip and it ended up saving us 30% in costs between the difference. So I hope this small tip helps your company as well.